Apoptosis-associated Speck-like Protein (ASC) Controls Legionella pneumophila Infection in Human Monocytes
ABSTRACT The ability of Legionella pneumophila to cause pneumonia is determined by its capability to evade the immune system and grow within human monocytes and their derived macrophages. Human monocytes efficiently activate caspase-1 in response to Salmonella but not to L. pneumophila. The molecular mechanism for the lack of inflammasome activation during L. pneumophila infection is unknown. Evaluation of the expression of several inflammasome components in human monocytes during L. pneumophila infection revealed that the expression of the apoptosis-associated speck-like protein (ASC) and the NOD-like receptor NLRC4 are significantly down-regulated in human monocytes. Exogenous expression of ASC maintained the protein level constant during L. pneumophila infection and conveyed caspase-1 activation and restricted the growth of the pathogen. Further depletion of ASC with siRNA was accompanied with improved NF-κB activation and enhanced L. pneumophila growth. Therefore, our data demonstrate that L. pneumophila manipulates ASC levels to evade inflammasome activation and grow in human monocytes. By targeting ASC, L. pneumophila modulates the inflammasome, the apoptosome, and NF-κB pathway simultaneously.
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ABSTRACT: Cell death can be critical for host defense against intracellular pathogens because it eliminates a crucial replicative niche, and pro-inflammatory cell death can alert neighboring cells to the presence of pathogenic organisms and enhance downstream immune responses. Pyroptosis is a pro-inflammatory form of cell death triggered by the inflammasome, a multi-protein complex that assembles in the cytosol to activate caspase-1. Inflammasome activation by pathogens hinges upon violation of the host cell cytosol by activities such as the use of pore-forming toxins, the use of specialized secretion systems, or the cytosolic presence of the pathogen itself. Recently, a non-canonical inflammasome has been described that activates caspase-11 and also leads to pro-inflammatory cell death. Caspase-11 is activated rapidly and robustly in response to violation of the cytosol by bacterial pathogens as well. In this mini-review, we describe the canonical and non-canonical inflammasome pathways that are critical for host defense against a model intracellular bacterial pathogen that accesses the host cytosol-Legionella pneumophila.Frontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology 12/2013; 3:111. DOI:10.3389/fcimb.2013.00111 · 2.62 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Within protozoa or human macrophages Legionella pneumophila evades the endosomal pathway and replicates within an ER-derived vacuole termed the Legionella-containing vacuole (LCV). The LCV membrane-localized AnkB effector of L. pneumophila is an F-box protein that mediates decoration of the LCV with lysine48-linked polyubiquitinated proteins, which is essential for intra-vacuolar replication. Using High Throughput LC-MS analysis, we have identified the total and ubiquitinated host-derived proteome of LCVs purified from human U937 macrophages. The LCVs harboring the AA100/130b WT strain contain 1193 proteins including 24 ubiquitinated proteins, while the ankB mutant LCVs contain 1546 proteins with 29 ubiquitinated proteins. Pathway analyses reveal enrichment of proteins involved in signaling, protein transport, phosphatidylinositol and carbohydrate metabolism on both WT and ankB mutant LCVs. The ankB mutant LCVs are preferentially enriched for proteins involved in transcription/translation and immune responses. Ubiquitinated proteins on the WT strain LCVs are enriched for immune response, signaling, regulation, intracellular trafficking, and amino acid transport pathways, while ubiquitinated proteins on the ankB mutant LCVs are enriched for vesicle trafficking, signaling and ubiquitination pathways. The complete and ubiquitinated LCV proteome within human macrophages illustrates complex and dynamic biogenesis of the LCV and provide a rich resource for future studies.Journal of Proteome Research 11/2014; 14(1). DOI:10.1021/pr500765x · 5.00 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The innate immune system plays a critical role in defense against microbial infection and employs germline-encoded pattern recognition receptors to detect broadly conserved microbial structures or activities. Pattern recognition receptors of the nucleotide binding domain/leucine rich repeat (NLR) family respond to particular microbial products or disruption of cellular physiology, and mediate the activation of an arm of the innate immune response termed the inflammasome. Inflammasomes are multiprotein complexes that are inducibly assembled in response to the contamination of the host cell cytosol by microbial products. Individual NLRs sense the presence of their cognate stimuli, and initiate assembly of inflammasomes via the adaptor protein apoptosis-associated speck-like protein containing a caspase recruitment domain (ASC) and the effector pro-enzyme caspase-1. Inflammasome activation leads to rapid release of pro-inflammatory mediators of the IL-1 family as well as the release of intracellular alarmins due to a lytic form of programmed cell death termed pyroptosis. Over the past 15 years, a great deal has been learned about the mechanisms that drive inflammasome activation in response to infection by diverse pathogens. However, pathogens have also evolved mechanisms to evade or suppress host defenses, and the mechanisms by which pathogens evade inflammasome activation are not well-understood. Here, we will discuss emerging evidence on how diverse pathogens evade inflammasome activation, and what these studies have revealed about inflammasome biology. Deeper understanding of pathogen evasion of inflammasome activation has the potential to lead to development of novel classes of immunomodulatory factors that could be used in the context of human inflammatory diseases. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.Seminars in Immunology 04/2015; DOI:10.1016/j.smim.2015.03.006 · 6.12 Impact Factor